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65 reviews found containing some or all of your search criteria. See results below.

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The Naked King

Sally MacKenzie. Kensington/Zebra, $6.99 mass market (352p) ISBN 978-1-4201-0255-0

MacKenzie concludes her seven-book humorous Regency series (The Naked Viscount, etc.) with a variation on the theme of sisters undertaking a London season. Stephen Parker-Roth, the "King of Hearts," is the most eligible of bachelors. Lady Anne Marston is a bespectacled, dowdy bluestocking with a disgraceful secret: at 17 she was raped by the dastardly Lord Brentwood. She retreated to her country home and has only come to London 10 years later to help her younger sister enter society. When Anne meets Stephen, instant sizzle and an unfortunate public mishap lead to a pretend engagement and real romance. Then Brentwood turns up to reveal Anne's past and she finally gets the chance to defend herself and her honor. While the characters are a bit predictable, the enjoyable blend of passion and humor will please MacKenzie's fans. (June)

Reviewed on 04/11/2011 | Release date: 06/01/2011 | Details & Permalink

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The Soldier

Grace Burrowes. Sourcebooks Casablanca, $6.99 mass market (448p) ISBN 978-1-4022-4567-1

Burrowes follows 2010's The Heir with the captivating, sweetly domestic Regency-era tale of a duke's illegitimate son and a countryside baker. Rewarded for his military service with a title and a long-neglected estate, Devlin St. Just's attempt to find peace is disrupted by the young bastard daughter of the estate's previous owner. Feeling responsible for her, Devlin invites little Winnie and her aunt, Emmaline Farnum, into his home. Emmie feels swept along but can't resist the opportunity to stay close to her niece. As Emmie and Devlin become confidantes, her friendship, insight, and ample charms help him heal from his emotional war wounds, but Emmie's precarious position in the community and shattering secrets drive her to flee even if it means leaving Winnie—and her heart—behind. Burrowes's straightforward, sensual love story is intelligent and tender, rising above the crowd with deft dialogue and delightful characters. (June)

Reviewed on 04/11/2011 | Release date: 06/01/2011 | Details & Permalink

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Vanish in Plain Sight

Marta Perry. HQN, $7.99 mass market (384p) ISBN 978-0-373-77576-7

Perry's realistic, nuanced second Amish romantic suspense novel answers many of the lingering questions from Murder in Plain Sight. Marisa Angelo's mother left Amish life for love of a non-Amish man, and then walked out on her husband and daughter when Marisa was five, leaving behind secrets, loneliness, and endless questions. Now an adult, Marisa is drawn back to her roots in Springville, Pa., when her mother's blood-stained suitcase is found in the wall of a house. Beset by suspicious police, close-mouthed Amish relatives, and a confounding man named Link Morgan, Marisa stumbles through the old mystery. A slow, sweet romance between Link and Marisa adds to the story's charm, and plausible concerns and motives lead to a conclusion that neatly dovetails with the events of the first book. Perry's own Pennsylvania Dutch heritage lends a pleasant verisimilitude to the details of Amish life. (June)

Reviewed on 04/11/2011 | Release date: 05/01/2011 | Details & Permalink

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Rapture Becomes Her

Shirlee Busbee. Kensington/Zebra, $14 trade paper (400p) ISBN 978-1-4201-1842-1

An American-born nobleman meets a daring English miss in a solid tale set in the last years of the 18th century. When part-Cherokee Viscount Barnaby Joslyn is injured and set adrift in the English Channel, he is rescued by an amateur band of smugglers led by 26-year-old Emily Townsend, whose unpleasant cousin Jeffery has squeezed their estate almost dry. As Jeffery plots to marry Emily's young stepmother, Anne, to the rakish Mr. Ainsworth, Barnaby suspects that his cousin Mathew, resenting the loss of his expected inheritance, might be angry enough to be behind a series of near-lethal accidents. As Barnaby and Emily are increasingly drawn to each other, Busbee (Surrender Becomes Her) ably juggles a cast of supporting characters, including Emily's bawdily outspoken great-aunt Cordelia and Barnaby's illegitimate uncle, John Lamb. Expertly combining sensual moments with family drama and brutal villains, Busbee spins a tale unusually well-balanced between its appealing central romance and lively action-adventure. (July)

Reviewed on 04/11/2011 | Release date: 07/01/2011 | Details & Permalink

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The Plain Man

Steve Englehart. Tor, $24.99 (352p) ISBN 978-0-7653-2499-3

Englehart follows 1981's The Point Man and 2010's The Long Man with a fairly ordinary thriller given life with injections of a magical theory influenced by Robert Anton Wilson's Illuminati and Mayan mythology. Max August and his fellow alchemists battle a right-wing cabal called the FRC, which has run the American government throughout the Bush/Cheney era and now struggles to maintain control after Obama's election. The stage for the fight, conducted in both the physical and magical planes, is the circus-like atmosphere of Wickr, a thinly disguised Burning Man festival. Englehart's work on Captain America, The Fantastic Four, and Superman has given him a terse, quick-moving prose style ("Listen, about last night—" "Had to be done." "Yeah, it did. But I never wanted to hurt you"), and plenty of supernatural action and pop culture references will please his comics-reading fans. (June)

Reviewed on 04/11/2011 | Release date: 06/01/2011 | Details & Permalink

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Karin Rita Gastreich. Hadley Rille (Ingram, dist.), $28 (328p) ISBN 978-0-9829467-4-9; $16 trade paper ISBN 978-0-9829467-9-4

A child is hidden before her village is destroyed by the tyrant king's soldiers, after which she finds shelter in the forest with an old woman rumored to be a witch. Readers who persist beyond this familiar setup will find that the story deepens as young Eolyn, possibly the last of an ancient order of female magic users, matures while befriending Akmael, the prince whose father killed her family. Though Eolyn becomes the hope of a rebellion, she never has to carry the whole weight of the story; Akmael, the "witch" Ghemena, and other characters develop many intriguing facets. Gastreich allows her heroes to have flaws—including moments of cowardice—and some victories bring new sorrows. Vigorously told deceptions and battle scenes will satisfy fans of traditional epic fantasy with a romantic thread. (June)

Reviewed on 04/11/2011 | Release date: | Details & Permalink

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The Glass Demon

Helen Grant. Delacorte, $24 (320p) ISBN 978-0-385-34419-4

Grant (The Vanishing of Katharina Linden) turns in a spectacular mix of history and horror that expertly draws from numerous genres. Obsessed medievalist Oliver Fox moves his family to a castle on the edge of a German forest in search of the Allerheiligen glass, a supposedly cursed set of stained-glass church windows lost or destroyed 200 years before. The Glass Demon, Bonschariant, said to inhabit the windows, shadows the search from the moment Fox's unhappy teen daughter Lin discovers a corpse surrounded by shattered glass. As Lin gets to know her young neighbor, Michel Reinartz, she becomes aware of the locals' hostility toward any investigation of the lost glass, while a series of uncanny incidents escalates horrifically. Skillfully mixing the strains of a dysfunctional family with the rising terror of the supernatural, Grant has produced a mesmerizing page-turner that brilliantly depicts the claustrophobic fear of a young woman grappling with the deadly secrets of the forest and the demonic nightmare lurking within. (June)

Reviewed on 04/11/2011 | Release date: 00/00/0000 | Details & Permalink

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The Stranger's Woes

Max Frei, trans. from the Russian by Polly Gannon and Ast A. Moore. Overlook, $27.95 (416p) ISBN 978-1-59020-478-7

Fans of 2009's The Stranger will adore this imaginative sequel in three novellas from author/protagonist Frei (a pseudonym for Russian bestseller Svetlana Martynchik). In a parallel universe full of surreal wonders, Max Frei is an outsider, a lethargic slacker plucked from our own world and recruited to save the City of Echo from illegal magic. When the city's police captain is poisoned, Max—now Sir Max and the Nocturnal Representative of the Secret Investigative Force—leads his garrulous team of magicians into the Magaxon Forest to investigate a mysterious band of outlaws. Later, the king of the Unified Kingdom enlists Max to solve a delicate political conundrum with a bizarre bird-worshipping envoy, and something strange starts happening in the city's cemeteries. Vibrant characterizations, witty humor, and mind-tickling ideas almost save the narrative from countless pages of trivial dialogue that drag down the pace. (June)

Reviewed on 04/11/2011 | Release date: 00/00/0000 | Details & Permalink

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The Secret of Crickley Hall

James Herbert. Tor, $29.99 (640p) ISBN 978-0-7653-2887-9; $17.99 trade paper ISBN 978-0-7653-2888-5

British horror writer Herbert (Devil in the Dark) breaks away from supernatural and SF horror to turn out a chilling classic haunted house tale. Gabe and Eve Caleigh and their two daughters need to escape their London home's association with five-year-old Cam, who disappeared almost a year ago. They move to Crickley Hall in the West Country and immediately experience supernatural goings-on, with thumping cupboards, a cellar door that won't stay shut, and odd, terrifying sounds and lights. Gabe and Eve discover that nine orphans died in a flood there during WWII, but they cannot imagine the depravity of the twisted man who ostensibly cared for the children, even as past and present rush together in a terrifying showdown. This delightfully over-the-top mood piece still finds room to explore the relationships between adults and children and the redemptive power of love. (June)

Reviewed on 04/11/2011 | Release date: | Details & Permalink

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Naamah's Blessing

Jacqueline Carey. Grand Central, $26.99 (624p) ISBN 978-0-446-19807-3

When half-barbarian witch Moirin returns to Terre D'Ange with her foreign husband, Bao, after their adventures in the East (detailed in Naamah's Curse), she finds that her friend Queen Jehanne is dead, the king is depressed, Prince Thierry has vanished, and little Princess Desirée is being neglected. Moirin promptly sets sail for a mysterious new land to find the missing prince. While it is encouraging to see fantasy novels acknowledge non-European people and cultures, the "Terra Nova" sequences miss the mark. Real-world mythological gods like Xipe Totec and real places such as Tenochtitlán appear alongside masochist angels and nonexistent countries as if they were all equally fictional. Still, despite a slow start, Carey's fans will enjoy the straightforward heroics and plotting after the previous volume's heavy angst. (June)

Reviewed on 04/11/2011 | Release date: 06/01/2011 | Details & Permalink

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